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Lundberg, M., Engström, S. & Lidelöw, H. (2019). Diffusion of innovation in a contractor company: the impact of the social system structure on the implementation process. Construction Innovation, 19(4), 629-652
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Diffusion of innovation in a contractor company: the impact of the social system structure on the implementation process
2019 (English)In: Construction Innovation, ISSN 1471-4175, E-ISSN 1477-0857, Vol. 19, no 4, p. 629-652Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose

In the construction industry, it has proven difficult to implement and realize innovation efforts, for example in the development of industrialized construction and use of platform concepts. Thus, the purpose of this study is to characterize the innovation diffusion process in the social system of a large Swedish contractor company. Specifically, the diffusion of three innovative industrialized house-building (IHB) platforms and factors affecting their adoption and implementation (particularly effects of their perceived radicality in relation to the company's decentralized characteristics) are identified and discussed.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach was applied, using empirical material including semi-structured interviews and archival records (research reports from earlier studies at different points in time related to each innovation and annual corporate reports). The material was analyzed using Rogers' (2003) five-stage innovation process model, acknowledging the importance of social systems' structures.

Findings

Structural characteristics of the social system strongly affect innovation diffusion. In subsystems that had not been involved in initiation of the innovations, they were regarded as radical, which hindered their adoption and implementation.

Research limitations/implications

This study builds upon the recent findings that successful innovation implementation depends on a range of contingencies in the construction context. Although the diffusion of the innovations per se has been traced over a ten-year period, generalizability is limited because the results come from one construction company.

Practical implications

Contractors have invested substantially in the development of industrialized construction and use of platform concepts, but less in their implementation, so they have obtained little gain. How innovations are perceived and implemented in different subsystems affects the success of their implementation in the overarching social system.Originality/valueThis study adheres to previous calls for more research on firm level in the complex social system of construction companies by adopting a ten-year perspective on the diffusion of innovation at a large contractor addressing in particular the impact of the innovations perceived radicality in relation to the decentralized characteristics of the company.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2019
Keywords
case study, adoption, radical, subsystem, centralized, decentralized
National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-75495 (URN)10.1108/CI-08-2018-0061 (DOI)000486543900007 ()
Note

Validerad;2019;Nivå 2;2019-12-06 (johcin)

Available from: 2019-08-13 Created: 2019-08-13 Last updated: 2019-12-06Bibliographically approved
Lundberg, M., Lidelöw, H. & Engström, S. (2017). Methods used for knowledge management and organizational learning in the practice of construction projects: a systematic literature review. In: Craig Thomson (Ed.), Proceedings of working papers from the ARCOM and BEAM Centre Early Career Researcher and Doctoral Workshop on Building Asset Management: . Paper presented at ARCOM and BEAM Centre Early Career Researcher and Doctoral Workshop on Building Asset Management, Glasgow, 20 January 2017.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Methods used for knowledge management and organizational learning in the practice of construction projects: a systematic literature review
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of working papers from the ARCOM and BEAM Centre Early Career Researcher and Doctoral Workshop on Building Asset Management / [ed] Craig Thomson, 2017Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Building Technologies
Research subject
Timber Structures
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-66767 (URN)
Conference
ARCOM and BEAM Centre Early Career Researcher and Doctoral Workshop on Building Asset Management, Glasgow, 20 January 2017
Available from: 2017-11-27 Created: 2017-11-27 Last updated: 2019-11-28Bibliographically approved
Lundberg, M., Lidelöw, H. & Engström, S. (2017). Methods used in the everyday practice of construction projects for knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer. In: : . Paper presented at 5th International Workshop When Social Science Meets Lean and BIM, Aalborg, Denmark, 26-27 of January, 2017.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Methods used in the everyday practice of construction projects for knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer
2017 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Many construction practitioners and researchers would agree that acquiring the knowledge created in construction projects is a prerequisite for organizational learning and improved practice. This applies also to continuous improvement by a lean strategy. Various technological tools and methods for knowledge acquisition have been proposed, but their success depends on acknowledging the involved individuals and on the interaction between project actors, i.e. embracing the principle of respect for people in a lean strategy. A systematic literature review to identify methods used in the everyday practice in construction projects for the sharing and transfer of tacit knowledge has been performed.

Findings indicate that a combination of technological and social methods are used for knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer in construction projects. Social methods such as workshops, different kinds of often informal face-to-face meetings, various forms of reviews, mentorships, and site visits, are commonly used for sharing and transfer of tacit knowledge. Therefore, these methods which also often involve different actors should form part of a lean construction strategy.

National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-67614 (URN)
Conference
5th International Workshop When Social Science Meets Lean and BIM, Aalborg, Denmark, 26-27 of January, 2017
Available from: 2018-02-12 Created: 2018-02-12 Last updated: 2019-11-28Bibliographically approved
Lundberg, M. (2017). Plattformsorganisation av renoveringsprocesser. Svenska Byggbranschens Utvecklingsfond
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Plattformsorganisation av renoveringsprocesser
2017 (Swedish)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

There is a need to refurbish the Million Homes programme in Sweden. Many of the housing complexes belonging to the Million Homes programme consist of a numerous of similar apartments. To learn from previous refurbishment projects a method for knowledge management to facilitate organizational learning would be useful. In new build, one method for managing knowledge is to use a platform concept. Applying a platform concept is understood as organising a container of methods and information that can be reused between building projects. The platform consists of information about the components, the production processes, the supply chain, and the know-how. In refurbishment projects, the reuse of components is difficult due to the large variety of building solutions in the existing housing stock. Therefore, a platform for refurbishment needs to be built on reuse of production processes, supply chain and know-how. The platform thus represents a container for re-use of knowledge between building projects.The aim of this research is to contribute to the understanding and use of a platform as an effective mean to increase knowledge sharing and experience feedback, i.e. achieve increased learning between different refurbishment projects, and the permanent organization, for the benefit of organizational learning within a construction company.The introduction of a platform does not necessarily mean that people will share knowledge more than before, which raise a RQ I: What are some of the possible ways to increase knowledge sharing using a platform? RQ I was addressed by performing four semi-structured interviews with platform managers with the purpose to test and discuss Javernick-Will´s(2011) theory of the importance of social motivations for increased knowledge sharing. Further, the project-based focus in the construction industry and the mere fact that large proportions of the work carried out on a construction site is inherently action-oriented, practical, experience-based and performed according to rules of thumb, thus encompassing tacit knowledge, are complicating factors for the construction of a platform for refurbishment.This lead to the formulation of research question RQ II: What is important to consider when managing knowledge by the use of a platform to enhance learning in construction projects? RQ II was addressed in the second study and a proposition for a knowledge management method was tested and discussed by attending meetings in five on-going refurbishment projects acting as an observer. Insights from the second study indicate that applying a knowing in practice perspective and developing methods for communicating and collecting knowledge related to tacit knowledge is crucial for successful knowledge management.Hence, the purpose in study III: To identify methods used in the everyday practice in construction projects for the sharing and transfer of tacit knowledge. A systematic literature review addressed RQ III.

Findings indicate that applying a knowing in practice perspective and adopting methods for communicating and collecting tacit knowledge and focusing on the individuals who actually will be sharing their knowledge and especially on their social motivations are important for successful knowledge management in construction projects. Also, managers and leaders should demonstrate knowledge sharing behaviours as this will facilitate the establishment of a culture where knowledge sharing is the norm. It is further suggested to use a combination of technical and social methods for managing knowledge in construction projects. In addition, methods such as e.g. formal processes, revisions, different kinds of face- to-face meetings, workshops, mentorships, and site visits involving different actors in a construction project are recognized as being especially useful for knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer where both tacit and explicit knowledge to some extent are embraced.In conclusion, applying an interorganizational focus regarding knowledge management, i.e. focus on communication, knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer also across organizational boundaries, including the tenants and sub-contractors, should be considered when refurbishing the Million Homes programme. Also, the adopted knowledge management methods should embrace tacit knowledge. Formal processes, revisions, different kinds of face- to-face meetings, workshops, mentorships, and site visits are recognized as especially useful per se. The adopted methods for knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer should acknowledge social motivations on the individual level to facilitate knowledge sharing. To constantly build the platform, the results from the knowledge management methods need to be captured while moving along through building projects. This is a task that needs allocation of resources and adequate methods for information capture. Considering the above, a platform concept for refurbishment of the Million Homes programme has the potential to function both as a vehicle for transfer of information and as a means for knowledge-driven development in an organization, i.e. a means for organizational learning within a construction company.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Svenska Byggbranschens Utvecklingsfond, 2017. p. 19
National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-67411 (URN)
Projects
Plattformsorganisation av renoveringsprocesser
Available from: 2018-01-29 Created: 2018-01-29 Last updated: 2019-11-28Bibliographically approved
Lundberg, M. & Lidelöw, H. (2016). Testing a Proposition for a Knowledge Management Method for Refurbishment (ed.). In: (Ed.), P.W Chan; C.J. Neilson (Ed.), Proceedings of the 32nd Annual ARCOM Conference: 5-7 September 2016, Manchester, UK. Paper presented at Annual ARCOM Conference : 05/09/2016 - 07/09/2016 (pp. 757-766). Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 2
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Testing a Proposition for a Knowledge Management Method for Refurbishment
2016 (English)In: Proceedings of the 32nd Annual ARCOM Conference: 5-7 September 2016, Manchester, UK / [ed] P.W Chan; C.J. Neilson, Association of Researchers in Construction Management , 2016, Vol. 2, p. 757-766Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 2016
National Category
Building Technologies
Research subject
Timber Structures
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-27526 (URN)2-s2.0-84991628058 (Scopus ID)100d7888-59b1-467c-8d29-9c20e29f896d (Local ID)100d7888-59b1-467c-8d29-9c20e29f896d (Archive number)100d7888-59b1-467c-8d29-9c20e29f896d (OAI)
Conference
Annual ARCOM Conference : 05/09/2016 - 07/09/2016
Note

Godkänd; 2016; 20160819 (andbra)

Available from: 2016-09-30 Created: 2016-09-30 Last updated: 2019-11-28Bibliographically approved
Lundberg, M. & Lidelöw, H. (2015). Social Motivations for Knowledge Sharing in Construction Companies (ed.). Paper presented at Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization : 28/05/2015 - 29/05/2015. Procedia Economics and Finance, 21, 224-230
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Social Motivations for Knowledge Sharing in Construction Companies
2015 (English)In: Procedia Economics and Finance, E-ISSN 2212-5671, Vol. 21, p. 224-230Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In 1965 a political initiative was taken launched to solve the lack of accommodation in Sweden, and during a ten- year period about one million new homes were built- the Million Homes programme. These buildings constitute about one fourth of the entire Swedish building stock and thus have a high societal value. Today they do not always meet current building standards and many are in need of refurbishment. The Million Homes programme incorporated a large variety of technical building solutions, andknowledge about former building practices is needed if refurbishment is to be successful. Industrialised builders in Sweden have recognized the use of a platform as one means of sharing knowledge. A platform is essentially the collection of assets that are shared by a set of products. In a platform for housing refurbishment the assets have knowledge and process content (as opposed to product content) and will probably also contain many relationships. The interview study carried out as part of the research shows that the main purpose of a platform concept is to standardize components and processes. To increase the possibility that a platform concept for refurbishment of buildings will beused for knowledge sharing the focus should be on the individuals who will actually be sharing their knowledge and especially on social motivations. It is important that managers and leaders demonstrate knowledge sharing behaviors as this will lead to the establishment of a culture where knowledge sharing is the norm; in the context of this study this is especially important for the creation of an efficient platform concept for refurbishment

National Category
Building Technologies
Research subject
Timber Structures
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-27814 (URN)10.1016/S2212-5671(15)00171-9 (DOI)15e0a43a-73cf-4fcc-afee-ee2167baa87c (Local ID)15e0a43a-73cf-4fcc-afee-ee2167baa87c (Archive number)15e0a43a-73cf-4fcc-afee-ee2167baa87c (OAI)
Conference
Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization : 28/05/2015 - 29/05/2015
Note

Godkänd; 2015; 20150519 (andbra); Konferensartikel i tidskrift

Available from: 2016-09-30 Created: 2016-09-30 Last updated: 2019-11-28Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0003-4989-7958

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